This paper approves that newspapers, radio, television and the internet allow citizens the opportunity to make informed choices and serves as part of the checks and balances of a society, a ‘fourth branch of government.’ Mass media is necessary as its existence ensures that those elected to public office are held accountable. The media also serves to entertain as the line drawn between news efforts to amuse and sources of entertainment attempting to inform is crossed continuously. Media acts as the link between people’s personal lives to events outside what they encounter in their everyday routine. Because of this connection, it serves as an important vehicle in the understanding of how society functions. The media reflects and reports, and as some speculate, shapes society thus an understanding of these venues of information is vital to the understanding of our civilization itself. This discussion will address what impact the mass media has in its role within society.
This essay makes a conclusion that in this age of highly technologically produced mass communication, it has become possible for us to gain access to far more information than ever before in the history of mankind. The powerful influence and far-reaching access of mass media and its evolving effects on society is a subject of vital debate as the level of freedom the media experiences dictates the level of freedom of the country. Information is crucial to a complex and advanced civilization. We are an information-hungry society that feeds on an ever-increasing amount of facts to maintain and increase the standard of living. Information has always been and is increasingly becoming a commodity for which the public is willing to pay increasing amounts to access.